Author Archives: Alexus McLeod

Approaches to Chinese and Comparative Philosophy–What Are We Doing?

I’ve been thinking recently about a difficulty in our field in general.  Especially after reading some comments on an earlier post on publishing in Chinese philosophy, it seems a good time to discuss this issue.  There are, all of us would admit, a number of different and sometimes opposing methodologies concerning how we read, interpret, and use ancient Chinese philosophical material in our work.  We have different agendas, and have different methods of reading and using texts and ancient material based on these agendas.  However, we often fail to lay our cards on the table concerning these agendas when we write, and also fail to understand authors’ approaches when we read them, and this makes for confusion and tension as the field of Chinese and comparative philosophy attempts to grow to a more prominent position within philosophy in general.  I am thinking here of Chinese philosophy as done by philosophers primarily, because I recognize there are different, and sometimes incompatible, agendas for others in different fields as well, which complicates the issue even further.  Continue reading →